Well, Joyce’s method nailed the winner, the great Essential Quality but 2-5 odds or 2.10 he did not pay. Some though like a “sure thing” but a $1000 to get a $100.00 is dicey to me. The exacta fared slightly better at a 2 to 1 odds for $5.90, but the best bet was the 10 cents Superfecta for $13.22. The real slam dunk was the Daily Double Essential Quality and Home For Christmas. I’ve attached the whole card for those interested.The next big race is the Breeder’s Cup on November 5th in Del Mar, California.

Read more: The RunHappy Travers @ Saratoga Park

I guess they are trying to compete with the Melbourne Cup, turf race, also that weekend in Victoria, Australia. But November is a long time coming, so for those who love turf, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp in France is the month before. Even if you don’t, play the turf or overseas, this one is a classic and its a beauty to watch.

On a sad note, Harvey Pack of NYRA passed last month and has moved on to greener pastures. Our salute to a great horse announcer.


12th Race – Saratoga – Saturday, August 28th, 2021

Conditions: Runhappy Travers S., Stakes, $1,250,000, Open 3 yo, 1 1/4M, Dirt.
Off Time: 6:15 Number of Runners: 7 Track: Fast Weather: Cloudy 73o
Pedigree: 2 – Essential Quality, Gray or Roan Colt, 3, by Tapit – Delightful Quality by Elusive Quality
Fractions: :24, :484, 1:142, 1:384, 2:014 (:24.18, :48.96, 1:14.49, 1:38.81, 2:01.96)
2Essential QualitySaez Luis1262.902.302.10
1Midnight BourbonSantana, Jr. Ricardo126 4.003.30
5Miles DPrat Flavien126  4.90
Wager TypePayoffWinning NumbersPool
$1 Daily Double$6.102-2$376,537
$1 Exacta$5.902-1$2,259,530
$0.10 Superfecta$13.222-1-5-3$701,119
$0.50 Trifecta$24.372-1-5$1,384,376
$1 Pick 3$14.906-2-2 (3 correct)$304,203
$2 Pick 4$156.50(TRAVERS 2 DAY P4)2/3-4-6-2 (4 correct)$169,386
$1 Grand Slam$3.902/4/6-3/5/6-2/6/7-2 (4 correct)$94,873
$0.50 Pick 5$73.627-2-6-2-2 (5 correct)$2,295,859
$1 Pick 6$4.051-7-2-6-2-2 (5 correct)N/A
$1 Pick 6$113.001-7-2-6-2-2 (6 correct)$1,420,834
Owner:Godolphin, LLC
Trainer:Brad H. Cox
Breeder:Godolphin (KY )
Also Ran:3 – Keepmeinmind, 7 – King Fury, 6 – Masqueparade, 4 – Dynamic One


Saturday at the Saratoga Racetrack.pdf

Moving on to September

Pennsylvania Derby–September 18, 2021
American Pharoah Stakes–September 25, 2021

The juveniles shine at Grade I level from September with the American Pharoah Stakes as a major Breeders’ Cup trial, while the sophomores go in the $1million Pennsylvania Derby at Philadelphia Park, Philadelphia, PA. So we’ll probably watch those.


I’ve already mentioned the beautiful Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe that is the major race in Europe, but in the US everyone is looking to the Breeders’ Cup by now, and the major juvenile race is the Futurity at Keeneland, but I am very partial to the Jockey Club Cup at Belmont,. So that gives us four races to practice before the big payoff at Del-Mar.

Shadwell Turf MileKeeneland3yo+, 1 mile (turf), GI


October 2, 2021

Breeders’ Futurity StakesKeeneland2yo, 1 1/16 miles, GI
October 2, 2021
Jockey Club Gold CupBelmont Park3yo+, 1¼ miles, GI
October 9, 2021


  • Breeders’ Cup – November 5 & 6, 2021
  • Clark Handicap – November 26, 2021

This is the moment the whole American horse racing calendar leads up to. Live streaming of major horse races reaches a peak now as the Breeders’ Cup gets going in California. 14 championship races all take place at Del Mar this year, from 5½ furlongs to 1¼ miles on turf and dirt, for juveniles, older horses, fillies, and colts and all for huge prize money.

After the Triple Crown, the Pacific Classic, the Haskell, and the Travers, the next horse race all trainers are looking forward to is the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, and that is just one of the big horse races coming up at Del Mar at Santa Anita Park, California.


And then in December is my favorite, the Cigar Mile at Aqueduct in Queens. It does nothing for the Derby, but The Great Horse Cigar was the greatest horse in my betting career. He was so reliable we all knew when his card came up after a bad day of track, we could go home winners. For when one has a horse, he knows all things. 1 George Herbert, one of my favorite British poets.

All eyes are already on 2022 by this point, but there is still more to come for the year. The Cigar Mile moves to December in New York, while the fillies get to show their speed in the La Brea out in California. And the Derby prep world waits until February and Gulfstream, beautiful park and the Fountain of Youth.

Yes, it is true, everything in Grade 1 racing centers on the Derby because it is the most lucrative one of all — all the sucker bets coming in. Getting that one right is always like a day at the fair, but what one day brings another will take away. Pity isn’t it?

Cigar MileAqueduct3yo+, 1 mile, GI (handicap)
La Brea StakesSanta Anita3yo fillies, 7/8 mile, GI

May the Horse be With You. 2 NYRA Race Announcer Tom Durkin’s sign off


  • 1
    George Herbert, one of my favorite British poets.
  • 2
    NYRA Race Announcer Tom Durkin’s sign off